SHORT COMMUNICATIONS RESEARCH NOTE Pharmacy student’s perception oftheir preparedness to perform in an emergency situation using a human patientsimulator ABSTRACTIntroduction: The purpose of this study was to perform an investigation to assess ifthere is an association between pharmacy students’ perceptions of theirpreparedness to contribute to emergency responses and their current work status. Methods: A cross-sectional study was conducted using a student perception surveyadministered to 3rd year professional pharmacy students during fall2014 as a primary method of assessment in an integrated therapeutics courseseries. The survey collected information on age, gender, level of education,ethnicity, and pharmacy related work experience. A series of five-point Likert scale itemswere used to elicit students’ perceptions regarding their competency inspecific areas essential for participation in emergency responses. The independent samples t-test was utilizedto assess if there was a difference in the mean scores on Likert scale itemsbetween working and nonworking students. Multivariate linear regression models were developed to determine ifworking status was an independent predictor of the students’ self- reported competenciesafter adjusting for covariates. Results:Sixty six of 69 (95.
7%) students completed the student perceptionsurvey. Students currently working in apharmacy reported higher mean scores on several of the measuredcompetencies. After adjusting for covariates, current workstatus was associated with higher scores on self-reported competencies relatedto working in a team with other pharmacy related professionals andcollaborating with other individuals to develop processes relating to the optimalflow of care. Discussion and Conclusions: The objective structured clinicalexamination (OSCE) and simulation is currently only offered to the 3rd yearstudents and a curricular change is being worked on in Summer 2017 to allowadoption of OSCEs and simulation to students in the second year of pharmacyschool. This will allow students more exposure and increase their confidence incommunicating with patients and dealing appropriately with emergency situationsprior to the advanced pharmacy practice experience. KEYWORDS: Simulation, emergencytraining, integrated therapeutics,pharmacy student work experience, student perceptions INTRODUCTIONHuman patient simulator use hasenhanced the learning transition from classroom learning to competent performance.
1 High levels of exposure to patient simulationhave been shown to significantly improve the development of pharmacy practiceskills such as physical assessment, providing immunizations, pharmacotherapyplan development, and monitoring plans.2 Simulation helps tostandardize practice experience that closely mimics patient care.1 These standardized practices also allowstudents to experience health care team interactions, time pressure, andcritical decision making in a safe environment with no potential harm to thepatient.1 Branchstated that many otherhealthcare disciplines have been utilizing the training conferred bycomputerized high fidelity manikin simulation for years.3 Its usehas been well documented, primarily in medicine and nursing and more recentlyin pharmacy.4-9 In 2011, the Accreditation Council for PharmacyEducation (ACPE) allowed the addition of simulation as part of the introductorypharmacy practice experience, thus incorporation of the use of high-fidelitysimulation became commonplace in pharmacy education.3,10 Therole of pharmacists in the realm of healthcare has been steadily expanding, asshown with the increased push for clinical pharmacists and residency programs.
11 As pharmacist’sresponsibilities and requirements continue to grow, it is essential thatpharmacy schools provide sufficient training to meet the needs of theprofession.12Many institutions haveadopted simulation-based models to meet these demands.13 By identifying the benefits to simulation-basedtraining, institutions are encouraged to include these training in their owncurricula.14 A study by Robinson and colleagues showed thatsimulation not only provides pharmacy students the opportunity to performclinical practice setting duties, but it also allows for students to gainexperience in responding to emergency situations.15 As future practitioners, student pharmacistsshould be prepared to handle emergencies they may encounter when completingadvanced pharmacy practice experiences.16 These experiences requirestudents to employ patient assessment techniques, therapeutic knowledgeapplication, communication skills, and teamwork.
12 Studies havesuggested that there is an urgent need to develop valid, reliable assessmentinstruments related to simulation-based learning.14 Implementation of simulationtraining in pharmacy student curricula has led to increased student confidenceand improvement of technical and clinical skills in clinical settings.14-23As such the College of Pharmacy adapted the useof simulation for the third year students and hopes to include it in thecurriculum for second-year students in Fall 2018. TheCollege of Pharmacy offers a 4-year program for students to obtain the Doctor ofPharmacy degree.
Students attend didactic lectures for the first three yearscomplemented by experiential education during the summer of their first andsecond years and the entirety of the fourth year. The Integrated Therapeutics(IT) course lab series is offered for 15 weeks per semester over the course ofthree consecutive semesters during the second and third professionalyears. The IT Lab II course focuses onthe therapeutic areas of infectious disease, hematology and oncology. During ITLab II, the student is expected to acquire the knowledge and skills which arerequired to appropriately dispense and recommend prescription, over thecounter, complementary and alternative medicines, medical devices and otherhealth care products.
The traditional assessment in the course in the previousyears required faculty to manually grade essay and short answer assignmentssubmitted from students via paper-and-pencil. In addition, students were given oral examinations. This method proved to be time consuming forfaculty, and students perceived differences among faculty in the rigor ofgrading oral cases. The proposed solution to this problem was to utilize theclinical skills center for the OSCEs and the simulation center for training thepharmacy students on proper techniques and promotion of patient safety inemergency situations. The first offering of the objective structured clinicalexams (OSCEs) using a live standardized patient and simulation exams using ahuman patient simulator was offered tothe third year students in Fall 2009 and Fall 2014 respectively.